How I Make Music As A Blind Individual

Posts 1 - 13 of 13
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    tunmi13 : Tue 16th Aug 2022 : 1 month ago

    So I'm not really sure if I'm even supposed to be posting about this, as I have read the forum guidelines to the best of my ability, and from what I can understand it goes against self promotion.
    This thread is in no way to promote myself. I simply want to explain how I am still able to make music, even as a person with no vision.
    I lost my vision at a very young age, so I do not remember seeing anything, nor do I have any memory of what I saw. I think my brain was still developing at that time. But that's not what I've created this thread for. This thread is to talk about how I do what I do.
    As my profile says, on several social platforms, I started making music when I was 12. The first device that allowed me to do this was my iPad Mini. On every Apple device there is an accessibility setting called VoiceOver (Settings>Accessibility>VoiceOver), which is a screen reader that speaks elements. You use gestures to control it, and also double taps to activate items.
    My first DAW was iOS GarageBand, which was very terrible back then, but from recent usage it is really awesome now. But back then, it was TRASH.
    I remember making little songs by using the drums, smart guitar, smart strings and smart piano. These were all done by having VoiceOver read out to me what notes I was hitting and selecting, what measure I was at, and moving around the screen I could find buttons like play, rewind, stop, my songs, instruments, etc.
    Eventually I started hearing about drum kits, or one shot kits, that you could get online. A friend of mine referred me to a few websites, and I started downloading these kits and putting them in my iCloud Drive, then using the sampler, loading those one shots and taking my knowledge of music making to the next level.
    For 4 years I used GarageBand, first on my iPad Mini, then transferring to an iPhone 6S when I was 14.
    Before I turned 17 (back in 2020), I found out that there was an accessibility plugin for Reaper, which made the DAW more accessible and usable for blind people using Windows and a screen reader known as NVDA (Non Visual Desktop Access). Instead of gestures however, the screen reader relies on keyboard commands and hotkeys to control what it does, meanwhile announcing what you come across as you move around on the screen. There is another screen reader called JAWS (Job Access with Speech), but it costs tons of money, meanwhile NVDA is completely free.
    However, this plugin, known as OSARA (Open Source Accessibility for the Reaper Application) enhances Reaper to be more flexible and usable by a person using a screen reader. So in 2020, I switched from GarageBand, and started learning Reaper.
    It was a slow process at first, but eventually I picked up speed, and now, Reaper has been the DAW I have been using since then.
    Due to Looperman's character limit, that's about all I can say. But I would like to thank you for taking the time to read this post. It means a lot.
    Nice to meet you,

  2. 630386
    JoeFunktastic : Tue 16th Aug 2022 : 1 month ago

    Hello Tunmi!

    First, I want to say that you are a positive inspiration for so many here including me. You refuse to defined by the hand that life dealt you. Tunmi, you are multi-talented. I am impressed with your list of accomplishments and spirit-driven creativity despite the challenges you might face on a daily occurrence. You are determined to live out your dream in music and I like your optimistic and upbeat approach to what you are doing.

    Finally, you are not self-promoting. People who self promote here actually don't have much to say. They just drop a link followed by HMU @IG or something like that. You gave us a brief synopsis and brilliant window into your musical liveliness. You shared a bit of your musical history and musical methods that you have adopted. Furthermore, I just think you are a remarkable person Tunmi. Making music while blind I cannot imagine what that is like, but you have proven that just about anything is possible when you have the will, desire, motivation, support, and the willingness to face monumental challenges. Awesome!


  3. 2485437
    121Ayem : Tue 16th Aug 2022 : 1 month ago

    That's Awesome man! Glad your able to do what you love and didn't get discouraged

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    cafe06 : Thu 18th Aug 2022 : 1 month ago

    Great post. Keep it up bro.
    You are a champion

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    Rasputin : Sun 21st Aug 2022 : 1 month ago

    Bravo, Tunmi... good job you're doing of making the computer serve you.

    I worked as a volunteer for Lighthouse for 10 years, reading textbooks aloud onto tape and CD for UC Berkeley and UT Austin students.

    I wonder if a GO FUND ME campaign would allow you to afford the JAWS software...

  6. 4393715
    tunmi13 : Sun 21st Aug 2022 : 1 month ago

    Don't worry, I am fine with NVDA, and I have way more experience using it. I am able to use JAWS, but I only use it for backup purposes, in which case if either of them don't work, Narrator is my next backup.

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    LordLennox : Sun 21st Aug 2022 : 1 month ago

    Wow this is great to hear. Keep doing your thing pal!

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    flsouto : Thu 1st Sep 2022 : 1 month ago

    That's amazing man! I was actually just the other day thinking about creating a loop maker software that would be very accessible for blind people like you. To be honest, my current loop making process is already something a blind person would have no trouble using. I basically just define the samples I want to use as input and then let the computer generate many combinations for me. Then I just have to keep answering "yes" or "no" to the outputs. And of course the outputs can later be used back as input, in a never ending loop process.

    Anyways, sorry for my little self-promotion as well.
    Wish you all the best,

  9. 174317
    smallpaul : Fri 2nd Sep 2022 : 1 month ago

    Hi Tunmi, what an amazing story. There is hope for us all. I cant begin to imagine what it would be like to loose the gift of sight. You have shown that anything is possible with the right attitude and determination. Total respect for you. Keep ondoing what you do.

  10. 4393715
    tunmi13 : Mon 5th Sep 2022 : 3 weeks ago

    Thanks for the support, really appreciated.

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    DeadStringer : Sat 10th Sep 2022 : 3 weeks ago

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience!

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    ashesanddreams : Mon 12th Sep 2022 : 2 weeks ago

    Wow, Tunmi. Such an inspirational story. You are breaking boundaries, and not letting anything stand in your way on your path to creating music. Well done, buddy!

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    willymiguez : Wed 21st Sep 2022 : 1 week ago

    Hy Tunmi,
    You are incredibly brave, I have great respect for people who continue despite their limitations! You are a source of inspiration for many people and an example of perseverance. Good luck and thank you for telling us your story.
    Greetings Will

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